Kirstie’s Foreword

By at home

Dear readers,

It’s been an eventful year for me – the birth of my first child, a bouncing 11lb boy – and time away from the television.

Yet the issues I’m passionate about remain unresolved ­and are perhaps getting worse. Over the years on Location, Location, Location I’ve seen the ages of first-time buyers rise and rise from the mid-twenties to the mid-thirties.

That’s not good because it undermines the whole of our social structure and life. Is it really right that circumstances force you on to the property ladder so late in life that you’re still paying off your mortgage when you retire?

There needs to be a far more active and encouraging approach from the government – especially when it comes to Stamp Duty and even Inheritance Tax.

New homes are needed but are new builds fulfilling the need for which they are required? Houses have sold well during 2007, but within a market where there seem to be fewer buyers.

There has also been a marked move away from a national housing trend to something that is more regional. London, for example, has soared ahead of the field but has been bolstered by foreign investors and huge City bonuses.

What I do know is that people will continue to buy houses and they will still strive to create the perfect home.

Join us in this magazine as we analyse the market, offer tips on buying and selling, and let you into the secrets behind clever property moves. You can spend a fortune or you can think outside the box and create a stunning impression for little cash.

Read and enjoy!

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